In this lesson, we’ll delve into the approach and key directives governing the recycling of end-of-life vehicles in the European Union.

  1. Objectives of the End-of-Life Vehicle Directive
  • The primary aim of the End-of-Life Vehicle Directive is to protect against waste accumulation.
  • It focuses on reusing, recycling, and recovering components from end-of-life vehicles to reduce waste disposal.
  • Figure 10 illustrates the participants in the end-of-life vehicle chain, with vehicle manufacturers playing a central role.
  • Manufacturers should design vehicles with objectives like low fuel consumption, ease of dismantling, recyclability, and reduced use of toxic metals.
  • Cooperation among companies involved in collecting, dismantling, and cutting is crucial to achieving directive goals.
  • Manufacturers must provide dismantling information for each new vehicle type and strive for vehicles adapted for recycling, reuse, and free from toxic substances.
  1. Certification and Role of Dismantling Companies
  • The End-of-Life Vehicle Directive mandates certification for companies involved in collecting and dismantling in the end-of-life vehicle chain.
  • The number of licensed dismantling companies in the EU has grown rapidly, exceeding 1000 per Member State in the top five vehicle-producing countries.
  • Dismantling companies are responsible for removing components and assemblies for potential reuse, such as engines and transmission elements.
  • They are also tasked with draining fluids and removing harmful substances, such as car batteries.
  • Certified dismantling companies are responsible for appropriately handling waste resulting from pollutant removal, reducing residues for the cutting process.
  1. The Cutting Process
  • The cutting process includes dismantling small parts for recycling, further cutting, and separating ferrous and non-ferrous metals.
  • Separated materials are sent back to vehicle manufacturers for use in manufacturing similar components.
  • Flammable substances can be recovered as an energy source in industrial processes, reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
  • Remaining vehicle parts and cutting residues are sent to landfills, subject to strict waste control.
  • Landfilled waste should be limited to materials that cannot be returned for recovery or reuse.
  1. Introduction of Directive 2005/64/EC
  • Directive 2000/53/EC served as the foundation for Directive 2005/64/EC, which focuses on vehicle type approval concerning component reuse, recyclability, and recoverability.
  • The new directive places stringent obligations on vehicle manufacturers and Competent State Authorities.
  • Manufacturers must provide comprehensive documentation on material composition, data for calculations, and a list of dismantlable components.
  • Competent State Authorities must verify compliance, material composition, and proper markings.
  • Components considered inadequate for reuse include air-bags, safety belt assemblies, seats, and certain exhaust system parts.
  1. Approval Certificate and Implementation
  • When a vehicle meets all requirements of Directive 2005/64/EC, an Approval Certificate is issued by the Competent State Authority.
  • This certificate confirms compliance with directive requirements and is necessary for new vehicle types to enter the market.
  • Directive 2005/64/EC became mandatory in November 2005, with implementation starting in December 2006, depending on the level of requirements.
  1. Global Implications
  • The European Union’s directives on end-of-life vehicle recycling have global implications for the automotive industry.
  • Other countries, such as Japan, have adopted similar regulations, emphasizing the role of vehicle manufacturers in waste management.
  • UN Regulation No. 133, applied to signatory countries, aligns with EU regulations, promoting harmonization worldwide.


  • The End-of-Life Vehicle Directive and subsequent directives like 2005/64/EC play a vital role in reducing waste and promoting responsible recycling in the automotive industry.
  • The collaborative efforts of manufacturers, dismantling companies, and regulatory bodies are essential in achieving these recycling goals.
  • These regulations not only benefit the environment but also foster international harmonization in automotive waste management.
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